By Becky Newell for The American Quarter Horse Journal
Thirteen 3-year-old American Quarter Horses made their debut to the industry November 16, and Snap It Send It was crowned the winner, earning $10,000.
The 2016 gray mare won the second Pleasure Versatility Challenge, presented by Terry Bradshaw Quarter Horses, at the 2019 Lucas Oil AQHA World Championship Show. Snap It Send, who is by VS Code Red and out of two-time AQHA Superhorse Snap Krackle Pop, was bred by Twylla Lynn Brown of Perry, Missouri, and is owned by Kent Ray Taylor of Mesa, Arizona.
“She’s simply the sweetest creature God ever put on the planet,” said owner Kent Ray Taylor of Snap It Sent It, aka “Bailee.” “She does whatever we want; she learned to change leads in four days. She’s really smart. Aaron (Moses) did a phenomenal job with her this year for me. I won the 3-year-old non-pro stuff on her, he won on her, then we came here, and she has just made me so proud.”
The horses were shown sequentially in three classes: The versatility pattern class was sponsored by Cimarron Trailers, and the results counted 40 percent toward the total score; the western pleasure class was sponsored by The Equine Chronicle, and the results counted 40 percent; and a conformation class was also sponsored by The Equine Chronicle, with those results counting 20 percent toward the overall score.
Snap It Send It placed first in the pattern and pleasure portions of the competition and fifth in conformation.
In a new twist for 2019, horses could not have been shown astride in any western riding, trail or similar versatility event prior to the Lucas Oil World official entry deadline of September 16. There were no eligibility restrictions for western pleasure or conformation classes. From September 16 on, horses could show at any competition and in any classes, including the All American Quarter Horse Congress, without forfeiting PVC eligibility.
Kent really likes the Pleasure Versatility Challenge as an event.
“It’s kind of exciting, you know?” he said. “I like that it’s about three different things and that they can’t show in the pleasure before you get here, so it gives everyone an even playing field. I like how they have a draw party for the entries to actually draw their order of the go – it’s not left to a computer. Everyone only gets five minutes to warm up for the pleasure portion of the challenge and there’s the halter at the end. It builds excitement throughout the evening, and the horses look phenomenal. Bailee wasn’t the only great one in that arena.”
AQHA Professional Horseman Aaron Moses started Bailee and then AQHA Professional Horseman Blake Weis worked with Bailee on changing leads and started her on trail. This team’s journey with Bailee began two years ago.
“I dropped Bailee off at Aaron Moses’ place, because she was foaled at my mom’s farm in Missouri and we raised her,” Blake said. “She’s been with Aaron ever since. He called and said, ‘We’re not going to show her as a 2-year-old; we’re going to wait until she’s 3.' So he started showing her this year and here we are.”
Aaron recognized potential in the mare.
“I saw a lot of talent in her, but it wasn’t quite all put together or there yet when she was 2,” he said. “We could have shown her as a 2-year-old, but I think we would have kind of wasted her doing that. It just made sense to wait until she was 3. She got so much better between her 2- and 3-year-old years. She has done really well this year and been a great horse.”
Blake has a special connection to Bailee, as he showed her dam, Snap Krackle Pop, to AQHA Superhorse titles in 2015 and 2016.
“She’s just like her mother,” Blake said of Bailee. “She thinks like her. Aaron was giving me a pleasure lesson today and he said, ‘When you feel her come up when she’s loping, that’s when she’s loping her best,’ and I said, ‘That’s really funny, because that’s just like her mother … literally, just like her mother.’
“As a testament to Aaron’s program, I only had her a couple of weeks before she went to the Congress, which meant she missed a whole month of working on changing leads and doing trail, so that really says something about Aaron and his program, because it was so easy to get her back to changing leads. There are no tricks to getting her to do what she needs to do.”
“We didn’t even teach her to set up for halter until we were at Congress,” Kent Ray added. “I have an amazing team.”
The total purse for the event was $50,000, with first place paying $10,000 and 10th place paying double the entry fee at $2,000. In addition to the cash awards, the winner of the pattern class and western pleasure classes received show headstalls, and the winner of the conformation class received a show halter all provided by the official tack sponsor of the Pleasure Versatility Challenge, Blue Ribbon Custom Tack. In addition to these class awards, the reserve winner in the western pleasure class received a Chuck Letchworth Bits & Spurs show bit. The overall champion received a custom-made champion belt buckle provided by Holly Spagnola Design.
Though the event only paid through 10 places, the 11th place finisher, KM Its About Time and Amanda Ringer, received a Dowdy Blue Ribbon Tack saddle.